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Our Programs

Skills Programs

Spectrum offers several programs that help young people learn to navigate the challenges associated with transitioning to independent adulthood.

These can include learning how to find a job, going to and paying for college, learning how to drive, or managing personal finances.

“Spectrum was life-changing for me… I wouldn’t have successfully gotten through high school or learned to live independently… I felt like I had a family away from my family. Everyone cared about my well-being so much.”

Compass Program

This program works with youth ages 12-22 who are at risk of becoming involved with the Department of Children and Families or the justice system, homeless, pregnant or parenting, or otherwise facing a crisis.

Our team will work with the youth (and their families if available) to help them become more stable and gain access to supports and services that can help them get their lives on track. We typically meet with youth and their families more than once per week for about six months.

Contact:

Jess Mizzi, 802-864-7423 x203 or jmizzi@spectrumvt.org.

Youth Development Program

This program offers case management services to about 200 youth ages 15-22, who are, or have been, in foster care or state custody through the Department for Children and Families in Chittenden, Franklin, and Grand Isle Counties.

Our goal is to help these youth transition to a self-sufficient and thriving adulthood by working with them eight areas of their lives: housing, employment, health and mental health, hard and soft skills, goal setting, assessing needs and strengths, and higher education. We also encourage youth to advocate for themselves and develop strong leadership skills.

Locations:

  • 191 North Street, Burlington VT, 05401
  • 186 Lake St, St. Albans, VT 05478.

Contact:

Khara Janssen, 802-864-7423 x221 or kjanssen@spectrumvt.org.

Jump On Board for Success Program (JOBS)

The JOBS program is an innovative, intensive case management program for young adults ages 14-26, which promotes healthy transitions to independence using employment as the catalyst for progress.

The program focuses on young adults who have multiple barriers to success, such as those who are experiencing mental health and/or substance abuse challenges, have dropped out of school, are at risk of homelessness, are exiting the foster care system, or have been involved in the correctional system.”

Through this program, we focus on supporting young adults with finding and keeping stable, competitive, fulfilling employment, while working to overcome barriers which jeopardize successfully transitioning into adulthood.  We believe that a positive work experience is crucial in providing the confidence, increased self-esteem, and financial security necessary to make a successful transition into adulthood and independence.

The JOBS program is a collaboration between Spectrum, HowardCenter, and VocRehab Vermont.

Location:

191 North Street, Burlington VT, 05401.

Contact:

Gina D’Ambrosio, 802-864-7423 x337 or gd’ambrosio@spectrumvt.org.

Other Resources

  • For youth ages 14-24, our Drop-In Center offers classes on topics such as life skills, job readiness, parenting, or safe dating, along with help with applying for jobs or state benefits, or finding a place to live. For more information, stop by the Drop-In, email dropin@spectrumvt.org, or call 802-864-7423 x222.
  • ImpactVT.org lists resources for youth all over Chittenden County along with articles on such topics as how to budget, get a license, renew a green card, get a birth certificate, etc.
For More Information on YDP:
Call (802) 864-7423 x221


For More Information on JOBS:
Call (802) 864-7423 x337

From the News

  • Thank you for keeping our youth in your heart.

    Happy Valentine's Day, from all of us at Spectrum.

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  • Cleaning Cars, Transforming Lives

    Recently, Jack Thurston of NECN visited Detail Works, our new social enterprise. Detail Works is a deluxe car detailing shop that gives job skills and life skills to our youth and empowers them to practice having a job in a supportive environment.

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  • The Game of Life

    As part of my senior capstone project, I developed a life skills training program for the youth in Spectrum’s supported housing. The Game of Life helped youth practice their money management skills. The cooking module was designed to show the youth they can cook healthy, fresh meals for a lower cost than buying pre-prepared food.

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